War of the Rebellion: Serial 032 Page 0690 MO., ARK., KANS., IND. T., AND DEPT. N. W. Chapter XXXIV.

Search Civil War Official Records

troops on the route, and that their destination was to join the rebel forces south of the Arkansas. They evidently had no knowledge of my being en route south, and their design was to capture the force at Baxter Springs, which they supposed to consist only of one company of colored troops and a part of a company of cavalry, but which had been re-enforced the previous night by an additional company of cavalry and a 12-pounder mountain howitzer. Had the escort stood their ground and fought instead of running, I have no doubt that I could have driven them in a few minutes, and, with the addition of Lieutenant Pond's cavalry, pushed and captured many of them.

Inclosed is a list of the casualties.*

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAS. G. BLUNT,

Major-General.

Colonel MARSH, Chief of Staff.

Numbers 2. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Charles W. Blair, Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry.

HEADQUARTERS,

Fort Scott, Kans., October 15, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to report to you, for the information of the major-general commanding, the following particulars, as far as they came to my knowledge or under my observation, of the late disaster at Baxter Springs:

On the 4th instant, Major-General Blunt, his staff, consisting of Major B. S. Henning, Third Wisconsin Cavalry, provost-marshal; Major H. Z. Curtis, assistant adjutant-general; Lieutenant J. E. Tappan, Second Colorado Cavalry, aide-de-camp, and Lieutenant A. W. Farr, Third Wisconsin Cavalry, judge-advocate, his clerks and orderlies, brigade band, and parts of two companies of cavalry, respectively under the command of Lieutenant Robert [H.] Pierce, Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry, and Lieutenant Josiah G. Cavert, Third Wisconsin Cavalry, left this place for Fort Blunt, Cherokee Nation. About 4 o'clock on the morning of the 7th instant, Lieutenant Tappan returned, informing me that about 1 o'clock the day previous General Blunt had been attacked within a few hundred yards of Lieutenant Pond's camp, at Baxter Springs, and the entire command, except the general himself and about 10 men, either killed or taken prisoners, and the baggage and transportation captured and destroyed. He also informed me that the general could not be persuaded to come away, but remained with his few men hanging near the enemy to watch their movements and succor any of the wounded who might be left alive, while he dispatched him (the lieutenant) to me to inform me of the circumstances. The lieutenant further stated that the enemy came over the brow of the hill, just from the direction of Pond's camp. It seemed, without a doubt, that his little force had been captured and destroyed also. He was further under the impression that Majors Curtis and Henning and Lieutenant Farr was prisoners.

Within an hour I was en route to the general's relief with three companies of the Twelfth Kansas Infantry and two companies of the Second Kansas Colorado Infantry and about 100 cavalry, under Lieutenants [B.

---------------

*Nominal list, omitted, shows 79 killed, 8 wounded, and 5 missing.

---------------